In an email sent to TechCrunch late on Saturday, 23andMe spokesperson Katie Watson confirmed that hackers accessed the personal information of about 5.5 million people who opted-in to 23andMe’s DNA Relatives feature, which allows customers to automatically share some of their data with others. The stolen data included the person’s name, birth year, relationship labels, the percentage of DNA shared with relatives, ancestry reports and self-reported location.
23andMe also confirmed that another group of about 1.4 million people who opted-in to DNA Relatives also “had their Family Tree profile information accessed,” which includes display names, relationship labels, birth year, self-reported location and whether the user decided to share their information, the spokesperson said. (23andMe declared part of its email as “on background,” which requires that both parties agree to the terms in advance. TechCrunch is printing the reply as we were given no opportunity to reject the terms.)
Who does not know by now that anybody with cash can access the information millions of people paid the company to have access to? DNA companies actually have done better than social media in that sense because people actually pay to be the product to be sold.